Babylon the Great Puts More Sanctions on Iran

US Imposes New Sanctions on Iran Over Weapons Programs

 

The United States said on Friday it was imposing sanctions on 14 people and 17 entities connected to Iran’s Organization of Defensive Innovation and Research (SPND), a body it said had played a central role in Iran’s past nuclear weapons effort.

Among those designated for sanctions was the Shahid Karimi group, which works on missile and explosive-related projects for the SPND, and four associated individuals, the U.S. Treasury Department said in a Statement.

“The U.S. government is taking decisive action against actors at all levels in connection with Iran’s Organization of Defensive Innovation and Research (SPND) who have supported the Iranian regime’s defense sector,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

“The United States will continue applying maximum pressure to the Iranian regime, using all economic tools to prevent Iran from developing weapons of mass destruction. Anyone considering dealing with the Iranian defense industry in general, and SPND in particular, risks professional, personal, and financial isolation.”

It said the steps targeted current SPND subordinate groups, supporters, front companies, and associated officials. The move freezes any U.S. assets of those targeted and bans U.S. dealings with them.

“Today’s action serves as a warning to individuals and entities considering dealing with the Iranian regime’s defense sector in general, and SPND in particular: by engaging in sanctionable activity with designated Iranian persons, you risk professional, personal, and financial isolation,” the Treasury statement said.

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Thursday that Tehran was determined to boost its defense capabilities despite mounting pressure from the United States and its allies to curb its ballistic missile program.

(Reporting by Susan Heavey, Mohammad Zargham, David Brunnstrom and Tim Ahmann; Editing by David Alexander and Susan Thomas)

Iran Refuses to Save the Oil and the Wine (Revelation 6)

Iran will boost defence capabilities despite U.S. pressure – Khamenei | Reuters

DUBAI (Reuters) – Iran is determined to boost its defence capabilities despite mounting pressure from the United States and its allies to curb its ballistic missile programme, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Thursday.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei waves his hand, as he delivers a speech on the first day of Persian New Year, also known as Nowruz in Mashhad, northeast of Tehran, Iran March 21, 2019. Khamenei.ir/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES.

“We need to take Iran to a point that enemy understand that they cannot threaten Iran … America’s sanctions will make Iran self-sufficient,” Khamenei said in a speech broadcast live on state TV.

President Donald Trump withdrew the United States last May from a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six major powers, saying it gave too much away to Iran, and reimposed far-reaching U.S. sanctions.

The U.S. sanctions aim to force Iran to accept tougher restrictions on its nuclear work, drop its ballistic missile programme and scale back support for militant proxies in Middle East conflicts from Yemen to Syria.

Iran says its missile programme is purely defensive and has rejected the curbs on it demanded by the United States. Tehran says it has missiles with a range of up to 2,000 km (1,250 miles), which puts Israel and U.S. military bases in the region within reach.

The other signatories to the nuclear deal – Germany, France, Britain, the European Union, Russia and China – have remained committed to the agreement and have been trying to salvage the pact by a mechanism to circumvent Trump’s sanctions.

Khamenei, a hardliner who has the ultimate say on all major foreign and domestic policy in the Islamic Republic, said the European signatories of the deal had failed to maintain Iran’s economic interests.

NZ FM heads to Turkey over Erdogan mosque remarks

“They have always stabbed Iran in the back … The Western countries have proved they cannot be trusted,” he said in the speech in the holy Shi’ite city of Mashhad.

Iranian leaders have threatened to exit the nuclear deal unless the European powers enable Tehran to receive economic benefits.

“This mechanism set by the Europeans is like a bitter joke,” Khamenei said, referring to a channel opened by the European signatories of the deal for non-dollar trade with Iran to get around the U.S. sanction.

Writing by Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Frances Kerry and Toby Chopra

Iran to Display Its Nuclear Advances

Iran Promises to Unveil 100+ ‚Nuclear Achievements‘ to ‚Send Message to Enemies‘

Tehran is prohibited from developing nuclear technology for military uses under the terms of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal, which Iran remains committed to despite the US‘ decision to unilaterally withdraw from the treaty last May.

Iran will unveil 112 „very important“ achievements in nuclear technology next month, Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran (AEOI) spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi has announced.

„The unveiling of these achievements under the country’s current circumstances will convey this message to the US and those enemies of Iran – that the Iranian nation has resisted economic sanctions and has turned threats into opportunities,“ Kamalvandi said, speaking to reporters in Tehran on Saturday.

According to the official, the achievements will include new homegrown breakthroughs in power plant, fuel cycle, laser, exploration and other technologies.

© Flickr/ Bastian

US to Face ‚Heaviest Defeat in History‘ if Iran Mobilizes Resources, Khamenei Says

Kamalvandi promised that the technologies would be presented on 9 April on National Nuclear Technology Day, an annual event celebrating the Middle Eastern country’s achievements in the field of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. Last year’s ceremony saw the unveiling of 83 homegrown technologies.

Kamalvandi accused the United States of waging an „economic war“ against Iran, saying that Washington was putting „pressure on all of its allies and non-allies to stop their economic relations with Iran.“

„However, the Iranian nation will strongly pass this phase as well,“ Kamalvandi said, saying that Iran would need to make use of its capabilities to counter and neutralise US pressure.

The official’s remarks echoed sentiment expressed by Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei last week, with Khamenei calling on Iranians to engage in a „maximum mobilisation“ to withstand „enemies‘ hostile pressures“ and defeat US sanctions.

US Think Tank Claims Iran’s Fordow Nuclear Facility Older Than We Think

Under the 2015 JCPOA agreement, Iran is obliged not to engage in the development of nuclear technologies for military use, with the deal’s other signatories, including the United States, promising to provide sanctions relief in exchange. Iran is permitted to develop nuclear tech for peaceful purposes, however, which Tehran seeking to use such technology to ween the domestic economy off of oil and gas and to allow more of its energy resources to be sold on the global market.

President Trump unilaterally withdrew the US from the JCPOA in May 2018, prompting the treaty’s other signatories, including Russia, China and its European signatories, to scramble to try to save it. These efforts have focused on measures to bypass stringent US sanctions, as well as US threats to bring Iranian oil exports down „to zero.“

Babylon the Great Transfers Nukes to Europe

image-2674

U.S. transfers two nuclear bombers to Europe

09:16, 17 March 2019

The United States has thrown two strategic B-52H Stratofortress bombers, which can carry nuclear bombs, at the Fairford Air Base in the UK. MilRadar reported on Twitter,  which tracks the messages of air traffic control services.

Aircraft DRYER91 and DRYER92 took off from the Barksdale air base in Louisiana and landed at the airfield in the UK on March 16.

Three B-52H bombers landed at the Fairford airbase the day before. Such a massive transfer of the US Air Force strategic bombers to Fairford has not happened since 2003 when up to 20 B-52H aircraft were deployed there to participate in the American military operation against Iraq.

The strategic bomber B-52H Stratofortress has been used by the American army since 1955. The B-52H was created in order to deliver two high-power thermonuclear bombs to any part of the Soviet Union.

According to the latest data, the United States has 78 such vehicles. Each of them can carry 31,5 tons of various weapons, including nuclear charges.

China Nuclear Horn Tests New Nuke

China tests new sub-launched ballistic missile that will raise the stakes in a nuclear war with the US

Ryan Pickrell

China tested a new JL-3 submarine-launched ballistic missile in late November, moving closer to strengthening its sea-based nuclear strike capabilities.

• The new missiles are expected to be carried by Type 096 submarines, which will replace the older Type 094 Jin-class submarines, China’s first credible sea-based nuclear deterrent.

• With a longer range than the current JL-2 missiles, these new missiles could give China the ability to strike the US mainland from Chinese coastal waters.

China recently conducted the first known test of a new submarine-launched ballistic missile, a significant development as Beijing attempts to bolster its nuclear forces.

The test, first reported by The Washington Free Beacon and confirmed by The Diplomat, involved the new JL-3 missile, which analysts speculate could potentially carry multiple warheads. While China has yet to confirm the test, it was reportedly monitored by the US.

The test was carried out in the Bohai Sea in late November using a modified conventional submarine, but the new weapon is expected to be operationally deployed on the new Type 096 nuclear ballistic missile submarines, which are still in development.

„China’s four operational JIN-class SSBNs represent China’s first credible, seabased nuclear deterrent,“ the Department of Defense wrote in its 2018 report of Chinese military power, referring to the Type 094 submarines. „China’s next-generation Type 096 SSBN, reportedly to be armed with the follow-on JL-3 SLBM, will likely begin construction in the early-2020s.“

The current Type 094 submarines carry JL-2 missiles, naval variants of the land-based DF-31s. A report from the National Air and Space Intelligence Center argued last year that „this missile will, for the first time, allow Chinese SSBNs to target portions of the United States from operating areas located near the Chinese coast.“

The JL-3 is believed to have a far superior range to the JL-2, which has an estimated range of around 7,000 kilometers. The Diplomat, citing US intelligence estimates, suggested that the full range of the newer missile could be in excess of 9,000 km. The Free Beacon, however, put the range between 11,000 and 14,000 kilometers. During the most recent test, the missile was not fly to its full range, perhaps because the test was a systems verification evaluation

Either way, the extended range of the JL-3 gives China the ability to take aim at targets on the US mainland without venturing far from China’s coast into waters where the submarine might be more vulnerable to attack in the event of a confrontation.

India Ready to Nuke up Against Pakistan (Revelation 8)

Government aware of reports on Pakistan expanding nuke weapons capability

NEW DELHI: The government on Wednesday said it was aware of reports on expansion of Pakistan’s capability for production of fissile material for nuclear weapons and asserted that it was committed to take all necessary steps to respond to any threat „suitably“.

Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman, replying to a question in Lok Sabha, said the government continues to monitor developments in this regard.

„Government is aware of reports on the expansion of Pakistan’s capability for fissile material production for nuclear weapons, the expansion in its delivery capabilities and purported development of tactical nuclear weapons,“ she said. The minister said the government was „committed to take all necessary steps to safeguard national security and respond to any threat suitably and adequately“. To a separate question on whether India has lost any territory as a result of international agreement and wars since independence or whether the country has gained any foreign territory through global pacts or wars during the period, she said the information is being collected form the ministries concerned.

India and Pakistan Prepare for a Nuclear Race (Revelation 8)

Modi government says aware of reports on Pakistan expanding nuke weapons capability

The government Wednesday said it was aware of reports on expansion of Pakistan’s capability for production of fissile material for nuclear weapons and asserted that it was committed to take all necessary steps to respond to any threat „suitably“.

By: PTI December 19, 2018 9:55

The minister said the government was “committed to take all necessary steps to safeguard national security and respond to any threat suitably and adequately”.

The government Wednesday said it was aware of reports on expansion of Pakistan’s capability for production of fissile material for nuclear weapons and asserted that it was committed to take all necessary steps to respond to any threat “suitably”. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, replying to a question in Lok Sabha, said the government continues to monitor developments in this regard.

“Government is aware of reports on the expansion of Pakistan’s capability for fissile material production for nuclear weapons, the expansion in its delivery capabilities and purported development of tactical nuclear weapons,” she said. The minister said the government was “committed to take all necessary steps to safeguard national security and respond to any threat suitably and adequately”.

To a separate question on whether India has lost any territory as a result of international agreement and wars since independence or whether the country has gained any foreign territory through global pacts or wars during the period, she said the information is being collected form the ministries concerned.

Pakistan Counters India’s Nuclear Horn

Ammar Akbar |

“National missile defense is poised to retrigger a proliferation of weapons, notably nuclear missiles. Everything that goes in the direction of proliferation is a bad direction”, said Jacques Chirac, former president of France. However, the recent S-400 purchase deal inked between India and Russia has not only prompted an arms race but also created the question of balance of power in the region.

While India’s hegemonic ambitions have always propelled it to acquire state-of-the-art weapons, Pakistan, on the other hand, has made sure that a strategic balance is maintained to meet any challenges to its sovereignty. Therefore, Pakistan is fully aware of its security and defense challenges.

It’s not a surprise that Pakistan’s indigenous cruise missiles have the capability to beat the layered defense shield of S-400 and hit its target with pinpoint accuracy.

In actuality, it is the opacity of Pakistan’s missile and defense system technology, which would leave the adversary completely surprised. Similarly, the inherent weakness of the Russian S-400 anti-missile system and advanced missile systems of Pakistan make this nation of Quaid ready for any undesirable military adventures by the enemy.

The S-400 Triumf system, ‘considered’ to be the most advanced air defense system, has been in service for more than a decade but its performance and operationality on the field is marred with skepticism and uncertainty. On paper, the defense system is capable of engaging with all types of aerial targets including aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), and ballistic and cruise missiles within the range of 400km, at an altitude of up to 30km.

These abilities sound impressive but the failure of S-400 in intercepting American Tomahawks missiles targeting Bashar al-Assad’s Al Shayrat military airbase outside Homs, casted doubts on the capabilities of the system. Russian political statements previously advocating S-400’s effectiveness weakened when senior Russian officials accepted that further improvements were needed to make the system more defense capable.

It must be kept in mind that the S-400 has not been tested against American and Pakistani missile technology. With Tomahawks, the American cruise missile, having a range of 690 miles and ability to skim the surface of the earth and take complicated routes to a target to avoid possible interception, it seems that the Russians would require significant updates in its S-400 system.

What’s interesting is how the Pakistani missile technology was also designed to penetrate the defenses of the S-400 system. It’s not a surprise that Pakistan’s indigenous cruise missiles have the capability to beat the layered defense shield of S-400 and hit its target with pinpoint accuracy. Babur, Raad, and Ababeel cruise missiles, the crowns of Pakistan’s cruise missile technology all have the defensive features to safeguard the borders.

The third Pakistani masterpiece is a warhead carrier developed indigenously to counter the strategic imbalance created by India’s procurement of S-400 is Ababeel.

So much so that even International defense experts have labeled Babur as the Pakistani version of Tomahawk. Catherine McArdle Kelleher, a senior American national security expert, has identified the unique similarities between the two cruise missiles. Technically, the technological edge of the cruise over ballistic missile is the maneuverability of the former.

And when it comes to conquering S-400, the Pakistani cruise missiles with multiple stealth capabilities totally dilute the pride of the enemy’s confidence in its defense systems. The ingenuity of Pakistani scientists in missile technology is remarkable. Not only do they accomplish to penetrate the current Indian Ballistic Missile Defence but also have the technology to undermine the abilities of over-hyped S-400.

Even our adversaries have long agreed on the superiority of the Pakistani missile technology. For instance, Lt Gen Sarath Chand, Vice Chief of Army Staff (VCOAS) of Indian Army, had already commended the brilliance and technical advancement of Pakistan’s defense industry.

The first line of defense against any misadventure in case of miscalculation and over-reliance on S-400 defense systems by India will be Babur. The cruise missile Babur is an all-weather nuclear capable land, sea and air launch capable missile. With a range of 700km and other distinct features such as Terrain Contour Matching (TERCOM) and all-time Digital Scene Matching and Area Co-relation (DSMAC) technologies, which facilitate it to engage in different types of targets with pinpoint accuracy even in the absence of GPS navigation makes it impossible for S-400 batteries stationed across the border to interpret the subsonic missile.

Technically speaking, it’s low-flying, terrain-hugging missile and its flight capability of less than 5km over sea level makes it easy to evade the radar coverage of S-400. Russian defense sources have already disclosed that the maximum engagement attitude for S-400 interceptor missiles is between 15-20km. The nuclear-capable Babur missile even has an advantage over the current Indian missile defense system as it can beat the interception in the endo-atmospheric stage.

The second missile, which has the ability to neutralize the enemy’s defense, is Raad. Raad, which is also known as Hatf VIII, is similar to Babur in technology but is a far more advanced air-launched cruise missile (ALCM). Due to limited information on the missile’s full capabilities, the opacity surrounding its stealth technology is to leave the enemy defense systems unprepared and S-400 is one of those systems.

Gen Khalid Kidwai, former head of Pakistan’s strategic command, has called Shaheen-3 Pakistan’s answer to India’s so-called second capability. With 2750km range, the Shahaan-3 is a power to reckon with.

With an official disclosed the range of 350km, the missile is loaded with self-navigating technology and can fly on a non-ballistic very low altitude trajectory in order to avoid radar detection. Furthermore, its land and sea launch capabilities have included Pakistan in the League of Nations, which has both land and sea strategic standoff capability.

The third Pakistani masterpiece is a warhead carrier developed indigenously to counter the strategic imbalance created by India’s procurement of S-400 is Ababeel. It’s a great achievement for the Pakistani nation, its armed forces and the scientists who left no stone unturned to successfully test the missile. No doubt Pakistan has achieved a milestone in missile technology.

The concern and the recognition of Pakistan’s MIRV technology by Robert Ashley, the director of the American Defence Intelligence Agency, further solidifies the significance of the development. One must note that in military warfare, future enhancements of adversary’s defense technology are taken into account prior to the development of new defense equipment. Ababeel, a surface-to-surface nuclear-capable missile with the 2,200km target range, was one such project.

What has made this missile a center of attention in the western and Indian media was its Multiple Independent Re-entry Vehicle (MIRV) technology. If we explain the feature in simple words then one can understand the lethality of the missile in this modern age. The S-400 system boasts a multiple layered defense protection against hostile incoming missiles.

Despite high claims of having the capacity to engage with hundreds of incoming targets simultaneously, the success rate of S-400’s interceptor missiles is not 100 percent as witnessed in Syria. Therefore, Ababeel’s MIRV system, which is capable of launching multiple warheads with inbuilt decoys- flying objects to exhaust interceptor missiles- at mid-course and the terminal stage, has full ability to counter the effectiveness of S-400 air defense system.

Pakistan’s necessary strategic reliance on tactical nuclear weapons-a detailed review will be covered in later articles-is response to Indian cold war doctrine of which S-400 is the cornerstone.

Pakistan has not only updated its missile defense technology to deter the hegemonic policing ambitions of India in the region but also made sure the Indian Ocean littoral is secured. Gen Khalid Kidwai, former head of Pakistan’s strategic command, has called Shaheen-3 Pakistan’s answer to India’s so-called second capability. With 2750km range, the Shahaan-3 is a power to reckon with. With built-in MIRV technology, the missile has full capability to deter Indian second-strike capability from the Andaman and Nicobar islands and penetrate the blanket coverage of S-400.

The advanced terminal guidance system on board explains the combination of deterrence features on board of Shaheen 3. In fact, Pakistan’s own second-strike capability achieved through Submarine Launch missile system, Babur 3, has taken hostile forces by surprise. As a result, the Indian army has triggered an arms race by spending billions of dollars on anti-missile defense systems.

Upgrading the ballistic missiles and turning to a nuclear triad capable state was the only option for Pakistan for it was important to maintain the balance of power in the region. It is worth mentioning that Pakistan is fully combat ready to counter Indian aggression be it on land, sea or air. Pakistan’s necessary strategic reliance on tactical nuclear weapons-a detailed review will be covered in later articles-is response to Indian cold war doctrine of which S-400 is the cornerstone.

Hence, the strengthening of Pakistan’s defense industry is a direct response to those powers, which dream to weaken Pakistan in the international society. As Sun Tzu, the ancient military strategist said, “Invincibility lies in the defense; the possibility of victory in the attack”.

Apart from the technical and expert analysis on the impact of the recent S-400 Indian deal, it is also pertinent to discuss the geopolitical analysis, especially when India, Russia, China, and Pakistan are members of Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). The gradual yet explicit shifts in regional partnerships could destabilize the region if the powerful governments fail to take into account the ground realities.

Anti-state elements tried each and every technique to destabilize our country. The response was simple, the harder you press us, the stronger we will emerge.

Buzzwords such as nuclear proliferation, nuclear suppliers group and sanctions are becoming irrelevant while America’s strategic partner is being given special treatment. The vivid example is America’s new strategic partner, India, whose complete violations of international obligations under Non-Nuclear Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) are justified as a diplomatic understanding between the USA and India.

Michael Kugelman, an expert on South Asia, argues that despite the converging of American and Indian interests, Russia’s relationship with India remains strong. Similarly, America’s nuclear deal with India, despite non-signatory of the NPT, is a clear message to promote India at the cost of Pakistan while disturbing the regional peace and security.  However, Pakistan is aware of these changes and has credibly maintained its defense capabilities to defeat the hegemonic maneuvers of India and its partners.

Read more: India tests Brahmos missile in “extreme conditions”

Sadly, if Russia continues to prioritize its security equipment sales over peace in the region then SCO would follow the same trajectory as SAARC. Any significant arms deal should go through the SCO platform and Pakistan especially should be taken into confidence due to its important geopolitical location. The dream of India to act as a big brother will remain a delusion as Pakistan’s hard power is globally recognized.

Thus, Russia should rethink the S-400 deal and amend relations with Pakistan to benefit from its counter-terrorism and defense industry expertise. The resilience of Pakistan army in the war against terror is proof that as a nation we prefer peace over violence. The SCO and its member Russia have to follow zero-sum free policies towards Pakistan, as it will boost Pakistan’s role in the organization. The objectives of the organization have to take precedence over national interests.

The state-of-the-art weapons are the reminder to those who underestimate the full spectrum deterrence capabilities of Pakistan. Pakistan believes in the peaceful rise of its neighbors but not at the cost of hawkish policies of the surrounding nations.

It’s a defining moment for Pakistan because, despite years of uncertainty and internal and external challenges, Pakistan emerged as the winner. Anti-state elements tried each and every technique to destabilize our country. The response was simple, the harder you press us, the stronger we will emerge. While Pakistan fought for global peace, India spent billions to upgrade its defense abilities to bully other nations and S-400 deal part of the game.

But rest assured, despite economic constraints Pakistan’s defense industry has become one of the best in the world and is capable enough to produce missiles and tactical weapons, which can sheer through enemies defense lines irrespective of S-400 systems. Defense experts in warfare studies would remember and quote this act as a perfect example of the balance of power maneuvering.

The state-of-the-art weapons are the reminder to those who underestimate the full spectrum deterrence capabilities of Pakistan. Pakistan believes in the peaceful rise of its neighbors but not at the cost of hawkish policies of the surrounding nations.

Read more: Does S-400 air defense missile system signal an end of Pakistan…

We understand the social-economic issues of the subcontinent but survival is paramount in the international comity of nations. When countries– such as India– spend billions on arms purchases and disregard poverty-ridden public, than necessary measures have to be taken by peace-loving nations like Pakistan to safeguard sovereignty because as the father of the nation said, “There is no power on Earth that can undo Pakistan.”

Ammar Akbar Chaudhry is alumni of St Antony’s College, University of Oxford. He is International Youth Ambassador at Global Youth Parliament, is a Defence Analyst, and author at ‘Hilal’ magazine, Pakistan Armed Forces. The views expressed in this article are author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.

India Widens It’s Nuclear Horn

India Test Fires Agni-V Nuclear-Capable ICBM

Franz-Stefan Gady

India has successfully test fired its most advanced nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), the Agni-V, the Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) said in a statement. The missile was fired from a canister on a road mobile launcher at Dr Abdul Kalam Island in the Bay of Bengal off the coast of the eastern Indian state of Odisha on December 10.

“The launch operations were carried out and monitored by the Strategic Forces Command (SFC) in presence of Scientists from Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and other associated officials,” the MoD statement reads.  The flight performance of the Agni-V was tracked and monitored by radars, tracking instruments and observation stations. According to the MoD, the user trial of the new ICBM was successful. All test objectives were met.

The December 10 test firing constitutes the seventh test launch of the three-stage Agni-V ICBM, officially designated as an intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM), and the third launch in 2018. The last test of the missile took place on June 3. A previous test occurred on January 18. In both instances, the ICBM was launched in deliverable configuration from a hermetically sealed canister mounted on a mobile transporter erector launcher.

The missile was fired in a similar configuration in December 2016 and January 2015. The former launch included testing the missile for its full range. Two other tests that took place in April 2012 and September 2013 respectively, involved the launch of the Agni-V in ‘open configuration.’ The Agni-V is expected to be inducted into service in the coming months. (Earlier media reports suggested a December 2018 induction date.) An operational deployment of the new ICBM would require at least two additional test firings by the SFC.

Development of the Agni-V began in 2008. The ICBM features indigenously designed navigation and guidance systems including a ring laser gyroscope based inertial navigation system. The missile has been primarily developed as a strategic nuclear deterrent against China. As I noted previously:

While previous nuclear-capable missiles of the series (Agni-I, Agni-II, and Agni-III) were developed to offset Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal, the Agni-IV, [and] Agni-V (…) given their longer ranges, are designed to provide a credible nuclear deterrent against China.

Additionally, I explained:

The Agni-V, a three-stage solid fueled missile, has an approximate range of 5,500-5,800 kilometers [the exact range remains classified, but it is assumed that the missile has a range of 6,000-7,500 kilometers], and can carry a 1,500-kilogram (3,300-pound) nuclear warhead. India has reportedly also been working on multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRV) for the Agni-V in order to ensure a credible second-strike capability.

The Agni-V’s increased accuracy could pose a problem for long-term strategic stability in South Asia.  The missile’s reduced launch time, paired with India’s burgeoning maneuverable reentry vehicle (MaRV) and MIRV technology, can reduce decision-making time in crisis situations and invite miscalculation.

The Race to the First Nuclear War (Revelation 8)

Image result for nuclear war india pakistanMissile and arms race

December 7, 2018

The quick expansion of military technologies and arms race between the two nations is the mere result of their divergent threat perceptions. Obviously, the competitive security narratives and their past stories of unending hostility between the two are the root causes of such perceptions. Among all the major military technologies, Missile Technology is the most expensive one. It eats up the lion’s share of both the countries’ defence budgets.

Moreover, the history depicts that Pakistan has always created the reaction of the action initiated by India. For example, the nuclear weapons, Pakistan commenced its nuclear programme after India’s so-called “Peaceful Nuclear Explosion” in 1974. Similarly, India, first, conducted the nuclear explosion in May 1998. Hence, Pakistan was left with no other option but to react in the same way in order to balance the mismatched power in the region. Resultantly, it is high time that India realized to stop allocating its resources in unnecessary military technologies so that Pakistan doesn’t need to react to balance the disturbed power.

SHEERAZ AKHTAR BHUTTO

Shikarpur, Sindh